Welcome to the ABA! Bell Talk Forums Large Bells Help with some bell questions…

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    • #11608
      JShideler
      Participant

      The bell in the attached picture was left behind in the basement when I bought my house in Historic Hollidaysburg, PA. I do not have the measurments with me, but I beleive the diameter of the bell is about 23-25 inches (and the yoke from end to end is about 27ish inches) and is very heavy (cast iron?). There are not any markings that I can find on it (inside or out) to help me identify the maker or where it might have come from. I emailed the previous owner of the house who told me that he does not know anything about it (it was part of his mother’s estate and was left behind) but a lot of his mother’s antiques were from South Central PA. I have a couple of questions that I hope someone can help me with…

      1) Is there somewhere on the bell that I might be able to find some specific markings that arent obvious that might give me an indication of who made it or where it is from?

      2) What is the bar (handle?) at the top of the yoke… is that where a rope would be attached to? I have not seen this on any other bells as i try to research.

      Thank you to anyone that can help![attachment=0:3j86bsy0]Bell.jpg[/attachment:3j86bsy0]

    • #16059
      jackbell
      Participant

      I’ve seen several bells in this style listed at the eBay auction site over the years. Nearly all have been by sellers in Pennsylvania and none were trademarked. Part of the bar across the top is broken off. It extended out from the opposite side ending in a hook for fastening the rope. The ball acted as a counterweight so the bell would swing with a steady rhythm. The yoke rested in a pair of A-shaped uprights. Is the clapper still present? It’s a nice bell and a good machine shop can probably replace the missing parts. Before investing money lift it and give it a tap with a hammer to check the ring. Even a hairline crack will ruin a bell’s sound and cannot be repaired.

    • #16060
      JShideler
      Participant

      The clapper is still present, but i must say that the bar accross the top does not appear to be broken. It is rounded where it fastens and looks like (to me… for whatever that is worth) is all in tact. I have not tried to tap it to hear it, but will have to try that. I probably will not invest in having the top bar fixed (if that is the case) since i really just plan to hang it in our yard. I have seen some places where they have painted bells with rustolium… is this recommended? Any idea what a bell similar to this is likely worth?

    • #16061
      jackbell
      Participant

      It’s possible the rope arm attached to one end of the yoke similar to a farm bell. Two coats of Rustoleum are fine, best brushed on instead of sprayed. I no longer offer opinions about price. Perhaps one of our other contributors will.

    • #16058
      JShideler
      Participant

      Thanks for your help! While I know you no longer offer opinions of price, would you be willing to give just a vague ballpark opinion? (I wont hold you to it) 😀

    • #16062
      Kallie Bell Gal
      Participant

      Hi there,
      I’m intruding into your conversation, I hope you don’t mind. I bought a bell like the one you have pictured about three years ago off ebay. In north Texas, there are few opportunities to find the bells I like. Anyway, I can’t find specifics for the price I gave for the bell, but I know that I paid less than $200 for the bell and associated shipping. I seem to recall that the shipping was near the $75 range; so that would leave the bell about $125. This is a ballpark; I just don’t know how large it is!!

      I hope you enjoy the bell,
      sam

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